Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Bit of Irish Fun...or Something

It is often assumed Diana is of Irish stock because she is a fair skinned red head. This irks her no end. She asked me when she was fairly young if she was in fact Irish because so many folks thought she was. I told her to really spin their heads and let them know she is ethnically Greek, which is true since my birth father was a Greek immigrant. (And I wonder why the kid likes to mess with people's mind as much as she does...).

On my dad's side (dad, not birth father) his grandfather was and Irish immigrant who was disowned by his Catholic family for marrying a German Protestant. Dad and his mother are a fearsome mix of German and Irish. Seriously, don't anger either one of them. It's just not worth it. So, since I am adopted that means almost nothing for my own alleged Irish pedigree but hey, I grew up in that stew so for one day a year I'll claim some Irish background. I produced a kid who looks Irish because he father does too. I never inflicted upon her the indignity displayed in this picture of her father though. He's happy enough in this picture but others exist in which he is wearing a very pronounced scowl. Yes, his mother did this to him many years in a row.

Now we'll move on to the trivia portion of our post...

Bagpipes were originally made from the full skin of a sheep. I guess that kind of explains why they look like the bagpiper is giving mouth-to-mouth to an upside down sheep and why the instrument sounds sort of like the sheep is protesting.

The Irish version of bagpipes is called Uillean pipes. Uillean means something akin to playing with the elbow.

The rock group known as the Pogues originally called themselves Pogue Mahone, which translates from Gaelic to mean kiss my ass. (I think I need to go find some Pogues recordings right about now.)

Historians believe St Patrick's real name was Maewyn Succat. Personally, I think the Irish improved upon the poor man's situation.

Ireland is the only nation with a musical instrument (the harp) for its national symbol.

(The last 4 facts are taken from Ireland Fun

To close I'll share my favorite toast from my favorite Irish poet, William Butler Yeats. By the way, poets were at one time esteemed as highly as kings in Ireland. How can you not have affection for a place where the national symbol is an instrument and poets are so well regarded?

A Drinking Song

WINE comes in at the mouth
And love comes in at the eye;
That's all we shall know for truth
Before we grow old and die.
I lift the glass to my mouth,
I look at you, and I sigh.

~W. B. Yeats~

Happy St. Patrick's Day


Suldog said...

Go raibh do ghloine lán go deo.
Go raibh láidir go breá an dion thar do cheann. Go raibh tú í Neamh,
leathúair os comhair a bhfuil a fhíos ag an diabhal atá tú bás.

May your glass be ever full.
May the roof over your head be always strong. And may you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows you're dead.

Jazz said...

I'm sort of stuck on the idea of someone playing the sheep with his elbow...

Cricket said...

Well, Limes are green. We are more than happy to welcome you aboard for the day. Just drink 'til you're Irish. ;-)

May those who love us, love us,
And those who don't love us,
May God turn their hearts,
And if He doesn't turn their hearts,
May he turn their ankles
So we'll know them by their limping.

Beannachtai na Feile Padraig.

furiousBall said...

happy st. patrick's day!

S said...

Lime, you are a regular olla podrida, aintcha?

Craig said...

Well, my birth-father's parents were Irish and Norwegian. For which there seems to be no possible fitting comment. . .

I'm frankly surprised that Mr. Lime has allowed that photo to survive intact down to the present day (altho you can certainly see where Diana comes from, can't you?)

And the bit o' Yeats is luvvly, indaid. . .

Anonymous said...

So today should be St Succat Day?

I have had some days that have sucked it but not today. The weather is beautiful and I am off work for the afternoon. Yippee!!

Mary (ox)

Craver Vii said...

I think Mr. Lime is a stud in that old photo. Better a kilt than the polyester floods that my mom made me wear in those days.

Your description of a bagpipe is priceless. I like them, except they're so dang loud.

Cocotte said...

Cute photo! My Husband is 75% Irish and I'm 75% German. I guess that means you don't want to anger my children?

Fab, feisty and fifty... said...

and suldog too is talking origins....

secret agent woman said...

I always claim whichever branch of my family is relevant for the holiday. Today, it's the Irish part.

TorAa said...

We do the Irish have read hair?
And why so many as well in Normandie?
Vikings were there;D
They settled as farmers....

The song by W. B. Yeats is a kind of surprise, regarding the Irish love of their famous beer.
But I agree with Yeats.

Did you, by the way, know it was an Irish/Norwegian group that won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1995?
here it is:

Jocelyn said...

First time I stepped onto the West Coast of Ireland was the first timte I seriously believed in reincarnation.